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Trip Research & Budget | Book & Reserve | Daily Itinerary & Map| Packing & Before You Go
#1 Travel Planning Pro Tip = FLEXIBILITY
Be flexible when planning dates, locations and you will find some fabulous cost-saving deals! It will also help to be flexible during travel but willing to leave time for spontaneity.
Trip Research & Travel Budget
When you have a few spare minutes, create a Pinterest account and start boards for places that you want to travel. For example, if you dream trip is traveling to Italy. Start a board and when browsing Pinterest, you can save travel tips, ideas, locations and other information to refer to at a later date. Having three to five destinations at all times is ideal so that you can then decide where to go based on cost, but have research ready to go.
Flights and hotel/rentals are the bulk of your travel budget. You will want to set flight alerts for your top three to five travel destinations to catch a good deal. I suggest a year in advance to set alerts with purchase of flights at approximately six months before your trip.
As mentioned, flights and hotels or rentals will be the largest expenses, also factor in transportation whether a car rental, transfer services or public transportation as well as budgeting for food, activities and leave a little room for miscellaneous costs. Check out Amy B's Ultimate Travel Planning Checklist & Itinerary to set your budget and keep information in one location.
Something important to decide early on is whether your trip will be to one location or have multiple stops. You will want to determine how many nights in each place so that making reservations and booking hotels will be easier.
Book Flights, Activities & Reserve Accommodations, Rentals
If you want to rent a car for your trip, once you have your flights booked and dates are set, reserve your car rental as soon as possible. The farther in advance the better deals you will find. Try checking a website that pulls lots of companies prices together for you, but always check with the company directly to see if you can find a better price.
When visiting a travel destination during peak tourist season, you should try to book hotels or rentals as far in advance as possible as well. Also start thinking about activities that have passes or tickets to purchase.
Map Trip Route & Plan Daily Itinerary
Use Google Maps to mark things you want to see, places you want to eat and hotels you are staying at and when you have your favorites saved then take a look at areas with clusters. You can plan to schedule certain things on the same day so you aren't traveling here and there all scattered.
Create this travel map about a month out from the trip. You can get excited about what you are going to see, but still plenty of time to finish out the details.
Packing & Before You Go
If you need a carry on bag, plus a big piece of checked luggage, then our packing styles are not similar. I'm a minimalist when it comes to packing with the exception of all of the camera/video equipment. That being said, I can still get by with a backpack and carry on size bag for a trip lasting 10-14 days. Later, I'll record a video on how to not pack as much, but get the most out of the small space in your carry-on.
Amy B's Ultimate Travel Planning Checklist & Itinerary also includes a packing quick list of necessities for any trip, but budgeting and itinerary documents to keep all of your travel information in one location.
COMING SOON! Amy B Travel Planning Services
Friends ask all the time how I plan such incredible trips and travel so often. Let Amy B plan your next dream trip or just help with travel research. The pricing and services for this will be available soon.